apostle…through the will of God08-08-2014 - Posted by Andre Piet
In the two Corinthian letters, as well as in the Ephesian and the Colossian letter, Paul begins with introducing himself as an apostle (= delegate) of Christ Jesus, through the will of God… The fact that he begins these four letters with this statement is very significant. It refers to the particular way in which he was called (see 1Cor.1:1). Saul of Tarsus is not a delegate of Jesus Christ, because he sought it himself or had chosen himself for this. Of himself, he hated the name of Jesus and with unbridled fury, he persecuted the Christians (Acts 26:11). It is precisely at the time of his calling, that he was on his way, outside the land of Israel (to Damascus), to continue his persecution, even there, with special permission for this by the Chief priests (Acts 26:12). That was Saul of Tarsus. And that he was called to be an apostle of Christ Jesus, on that occasion, can only be explained by one reason: GOD’S WILL. Later, Paul explains that the grace of the Lord overwhelmed him (1Tim.1:14). From the womb, GOD had chosen him (Gal.1:15), not only to preach His GRACE, but also to be a display example. Paul is a demonstration-model of grace and reconciliation: “the foremost of sinners” (1Tim.1:15). GOD reconciles enemies with Himself and if He can do this with someone like Saul, then He is able to reconcile to Himself all enemies, in heaven and on earth (Col.1:20). That is what Paul calls “the expectation of the Evangel” (Col.1:23). This expectation does not depend on human choices or the will of any creature. GOD wills it, He can do it and He will make it a reality!